New Blood Test Detects Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

Patrick Yang ’20 Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), commonly known as the human form of mad cow disease, is a neurodegenerative condition that is transmitted from infected cattle to humans. The disease’s long incubation stage allows for an asymptomatic period when prions, or infectious proteins, multiply in the brain with no sign of infection. On average, infected individuals die one to two years after onset of … Continue reading New Blood Test Detects Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

Gold Nanoparticles Suppressing Tumor Growth in Pancreatic Cancer

by Rideeta Raquib ’19   Gold is one of the most valuable resources in the world, and its value may be even greater due to its potential as a new treatment for pancreatic cancer. Previously, gold nanoparticles, AuNPs, were used to target tumor regions and aid in the transport of drugs and chemotherapy to the tumor.  A previous study showed that gold nanoparticles had the ability … Continue reading Gold Nanoparticles Suppressing Tumor Growth in Pancreatic Cancer

Understanding Antigen Replacement in Influenza A Viruses

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20   Influenza is a common viral infection that attacks the respiratory system. Major outbreaks occur due to antigenic changes in the influenza A virus, which is when virus strains from separate hosts combine to form different strains with a mixture of surface antigens. Unfortunately, the mechanism behind this replacement, or antigenic shift, remains misunderstood. Dr. Yuki Furuse and his team of researchers … Continue reading Understanding Antigen Replacement in Influenza A Viruses

New Study Reveals Effects of Timely Hepatitis B Vaccination

by Caleb Sooknanan ‘20   Hepatitis B is a viral infection that often attacks the liver. As infections have become increasingly common in Fujian, China, new measures have been created to control the virus’s impact. Such efforts have included vaccines for newborns and infants, as recommended in China’s national immunization program vaccine (NIPV) series. However, little is known about how the timely administration of the first … Continue reading New Study Reveals Effects of Timely Hepatitis B Vaccination

Effects of Chikungunya Fever on Pregnancies and Newborns

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20   Chikungunya is a mosquito-borne virus that incites severe joint pain and fever. The chikungunya fever (CHIKF) epidemic in Latin and South America in 2013 revealed that the virus posed a threat to maternal and child health. However, information surrounding the risks and effects of mother-to-child transmission of the virus is limited. Dr. Jaime R. Torres and his team of researchers at … Continue reading Effects of Chikungunya Fever on Pregnancies and Newborns

Potential Means of Controlling Fevers

by Richard Liang   The human body is equipped with effective mechanisms that maintain thermal homeostasis. For example, fevers can be induced to provide an optimal environment to fight certain diseases. However, it is vital that fever temperatures are maintained within a particular threshold. They cannot be too low or the energy available for enzyme activity will be too low. They cannot be too high … Continue reading Potential Means of Controlling Fevers

New Study Evaluates Antibiotic Usage in Malaysian Health Clinics

by Caleb Sooknanan   In primary health care settings, antibiotics are among the most expensive and widely used therapeutic drugs. The usage of antibiotics is typically regulated so that it is of appropriate dosage and affordability for a patient. A recent study performed by Dr. Shafinaz Shamsuddin and his team of researchers from Universiti Teknologi in Malaysia evaluated the use of antibiotics for acute infections in … Continue reading New Study Evaluates Antibiotic Usage in Malaysian Health Clinics

A New Method For Diagnosing Parkinson’s Disease

by Sahil Rawal (’19) Parkinson’s disease is a condition that causes lower levels of dopamine in the brain, leading to neurodegeneration. Parkinson’s is commonly seen in older patients, and causes a loss of muscle control. Till now, there was no test for Parkinson’s that would guarantee its diagnosis; rather, physicians analyzed medical histories and conducted neurological tests to look for signs of Parkinson’s. However, Dr. … Continue reading A New Method For Diagnosing Parkinson’s Disease

Emotional Self-Awareness in Children with Autism

by Amanda Ng (’17) Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is one of the most common developmental disorders found in children, and while there has been progress in research since its first diagnosis, there is still much that remains to be discovered. Individuals with ASD have trouble communicating and interacting, and even the highest-functioning ASD patients can have trouble picking up social cues or others’ emotions. However, … Continue reading Emotional Self-Awareness in Children with Autism

How Obesity May Age Your Brain

by Julia Newman (’19) Previous studies have all proven that obesity increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and even multiple types of cancer, but only now have scientists determined one dangerous effect of obesity on the brain. Dr. Lisa Ronan and Dr. Konrad Wagstyl, researchers of the Brain Mapping Unit at the University of Cambridge, recorded the brain structures of subjects from twenty to … Continue reading How Obesity May Age Your Brain

Understanding Acute and Chronic Pain

by Aaron Gochman (’18) The biological mechanisms for acute and chronic pain appear to be vastly different, with the understanding for that of chronic pain proving much more elusive. However, an international team of researchers may have discovered a link between the two in a recent study. NMDA receptors (NMDAR) have a diverse role in neurological function. They modulate neurotransmission, the process of transducing signals … Continue reading Understanding Acute and Chronic Pain

Exploring A Safer Steroid Therapy

by Aaron Gochman (’18) Most pharmacological approaches in the study of congenital adrenal hyperplasia involve the administration of corticosteroids, potent drugs that quickly affect the body. Extended use of corticosteroids, however, typically yields unpleasant metabolic side effects. Despite this weakness, corticosteroids have been the mainstream treatment in attempting to suppress adrenal androgen. However, scientists from the United Kingdom have discovered a novel approach: corticosterone, a … Continue reading Exploring A Safer Steroid Therapy